Idaho Supreme Court considers detention sex abuse lawsuit

Posted at 2:31 PM, Jun 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-12 16:31:21-04

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — The Idaho Supreme Court will decide soon if several adults who say they were sexually abused as kids at a juvenile detention center should have filed a tort claim against the state agency before they sued.

The high court heard arguments in the case late Wednesday morning, weighing the state’s tort claim law against a newer law that dramatically extends the amount of time survivors of childhood sex abuse have to sue their abusers.

Eric Rossman, the attorney representing the survivors, told the justices that applying the 180-day notice period created under the Idaho Tort Claim Act would gut Idaho’s Child Abuse Act, rendering it useless for some victims.

But Micheal Elia, representing the juvenile corrections department, said all statutes — from wrongful death to malpractice — require people to follow the rules of the tort claim act if they want to sue a government entity, and sex abuse claims shouldn’t be treated differently.